HC Deb 07 July 1902 vol 110 cc942-3
MR. JOSEPH WALTON (Yorkshire, W. R., Barnsley)

I beg to ask the First Lord of the Treasury, whether, having regard to the fact that, owing to other business being put down for the Evening Sitting on Thursday last, several Members were debarred from speaking on the Foreign Office Vote, and the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs had no opportunity of giving information asked for in regard to the situation in Persia and China, lie will put this Vote down again on some early day in such a position as will ensure a further opportunity of debate. May I also ask the right hon. Gentleman a question of which I have given him private notice, viz., whether the attitude of His Majesty's Government in regard to alliances with foreign Powers was accurately described on Thursday last by the Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, and whether His Majesty's Government had any further statement to make to the House on the subject, in order to prevent any misapprehension on the part of our Japanese allies.


With regard to the Question on the Paper, I can give no promise of another day for the discussion of the Vote. As to the Question since added. I have to say that the single sentence to which, no doubt, the hon. Member refers might possibly, if taken from its context, produce a misleading impression:— It has been suggested that the international position of tins country is one at dangerous isolation, and that we ought to grasp eagerly, and on any terms, at any alliance that may be offered to us. This is not the view of His Majesty's Government, and my noble friend did well to correct it. I need hardly say that we should never for a moment wish to suggest that the agreement with Japan was not entered into for a common object and on terms of absolute equality.


Will not the right hon. Gentleman consider the question of giving further opportunity for debate, in view of the fact that important questions with regard to China and Persia, of which notice has been given to the Under Secretary, remain absolutely and entirely unanswered?


No. I do not think it is a question of rival claims.